Email #25, Subject: deficit shell game?

Tom Price’s “tax exemption” for the Empowering Patients First Act is a major tax increase in disguise. If its costs aren’t specifically tax-funded now, then they just get dropped into the deficit to be paid later. But paid how? By taxes. If you really think Obamacare “was not the right way to” reform health care, how is this better? At least Obamacare was honest. Solutions cost money. Call it an Obamacare “tax” or a “penalty,” but either way, Americans understand what is being required of them. The Empowering Patients First Act instead pretends there are no costs at all, and so actually increases the long-term costs by deferring reality till some unspecified future when the system is in even worse shape. This is not a “commonsense,” “bi-partisan” solution. This is a shell game.  You are a Congressional leader. We expect better of you. We expect you to deal with the real problem directly and openly and to give us more than short-term Orwellian names and a long-term health care catastrophe.

Chris Gavaler

Author: Chris Gavaler

Chris Gavaler is an associate professor at W&L University, comics editor of Shenandoah, and series editor of Bloomsbury Critical Guides in Comics Studies. He has published two novels: School for Tricksters (SMU 2011) and Pretend I’m Not Here (HarperCollins 2002); and six books of scholarship: On the Origin of Superheroes (Iowa 2015), Superhero Comics (Bloomsbury 2017), Superhero Thought Experiments (with Nathaniel Goldberg, Iowa 2019), Revising Fiction, Fact, and Faith (with Nathaniel Goldberg, Routledge 2020), Creating Comics (with Leigh Ann Beavers, Bloomsbury 2021), and The Comics Form (Bloomsbury forthcoming). His visual work appears in Ilanot Review, North American Review, Aquifer, and other journals.

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